Notice on Agreement with Bahrain Government for the Promotion of the 5-ALA Business

SBI Holdings, Inc.
(TOKYO: 8473 / Hong Kong: 6488)

It is hereby notified that SBI Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd., the SBI Holdings, Inc. subsidiary engaged in the research and development of cosmetics, health foods and drugs using 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) (*1) (head office: Minato-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director and CEO: Yoshitaka Kitao; hereafter called “SBI Pharmaceuticals”) reached a basic agreement and concluded a memorandum of understanding with the Bahrain Government for promoting the research and development of 5-ALA and its penetration in Bahrain and GCC (*2) through close cooperation between both parties.

From now on, SBI Pharmaceuticals will continue to explore the potential of a wide range of 5-ALA’s clinical applications, starting with a joint clinical trial with Bahrain Defence Force Royal Medical Services Military Hospital (headquartered in Riffa), a Bahraini public hospital. SBI Pharmaceuticals identifies Bahrain as its drug research and development base in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and will also look at the option of expanding its business operations into the neighboring countries.

SBI Pharmaceuticals will continue to make utmost efforts in performing research and development of 5-ALA-based drugs with the aim of serving to protect the health of as many people as possible not only in Japan, but also around the world.

*1 About 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA):
An amino acid created in mitochondria. It is an important substance that serves as protein material related to energy production in the form of hemes and cytochromes, and its productivity is known to decrease with age. 5-ALA is contained in shochu distillation remnants, red wine and food such as radish sprouts. It is also known as a material forming chloroplasts in plants.

*2 About GCC(Gulf Cooperation Council):
An abbreviation for the Cooperation Council for the Arab states of the Gulf, the Middle East and Arabian Gulf regional cooperation organization, which includes Bahrain.

For further information, please contact:
SBI Holdings, Inc.: Corporate Communications Dept., Tel: +81 3 6229 0126
SBI Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd.: Corporate Development Dept., Tel: +81 3 6229 0095

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